Wanphen mcdonald bringing taste of thailand to tri-state

Wanphen McDonald bringing taste of Thailand to Tri-State Chef Wanphen McDonald, originally of Bangkok, Thailand, wants to not only fill your belly with delicious Thai food, but to share her passion for Thai cuisine and culture, bringing a new understanding of Southeast Asia to hungry residents of the Ameri Check out this story on courierpress.com: http://www.courierpress.com/story/entertainment/dining/2017/03/07/wanphen-mcdonald-bringing-taste-thailand-tri-state/98834452/

Chef Wanphen McDonald, originally of Bangkok, Thailand, wants to not only fill your belly with delicious Thai food but also to share her passion for Thai cuisine and culture. Gluten free oatmeal banana bread Her goal is to bring a new understanding of Southeast Asia to hungry residents of the American Midwest.

“I grew up with the sound of the cooking,” she said.

Vegan gluten free banana bread “I woke up to that sound — my neighbors, my family, grandma, dad. Gluten free banana bread muffins We cooked every single meal at home, and the smell of the food was always there; so I have that memory.”

In McDonald’s family, college was expected, so she first got a degree in biology. Healthy banana bread no sugar It didn’t inspire her the way food did, however, so she decided to go to cooking school. Vegan banana bread easy She began at Suan Dusit International Culinary School, where she learned Thai dishes but also traditional European classical dining.

After graduating, she decided her true passion lay with the special preparations and ingredients of her homeland, but not in an ordinary, cook-to-make-a-living sort of way. Healthy banana bread recipe uk She wanted to practice the finest, most intricate and most elevated form of the fabulous art of pure Thai cooking that existed anywhere. Banana loaf recipe easy So she had more training through the Thai Ministry Labor board and became officially government-certified as a Thai Chef, then applied at the Royal Traditional Thai Cooking College, where cooks and chefs are trained to cook in the country’s Grand Royal Palace and serve the royal family.

The school only accepts 45 students a year. Easy moist banana cake recipe McDonald was invited to attend with a full scholarship.

“Everybody in Thailand can cook, but I needed to be excellent,” she said. Banana cake recipe easy “At the Royal Academy, before they accept you they look at your personalty and background and everything because you have to work for the royal family and serve them and work in the Grand Royal Palace. Banana cake recipe easy moist I was really honored to be there and to be in the service of the royal family.”

There are many palaces in Thailand, all in friendly competition for the prestige of their kitchens. Super moist banana nut bread recipe McDonald worked at the Grand Royal Palace, the actual residence of the Thai royal family, for about a year.

“We did events for the royal family, for guests who come to Thailand, traditional celebrations such as New Year and other royal celebrations. Banana cake with chocolate chips The princess is all about food, and it was a big deal to her to keep the authentic, royal recipes. Banana cake recipe moist They are proud of me that I am here in the United States, introducing true Thai culture to this country through food.”

McDonald met her husband Ian, a professor, in Thailand. Banana cake recipe moist fluffy He was raised in New York City, and the couple returned to the US about three years ago to care for his elderly mother and to offer their kids a worldly education. Banana cake recipe easy and quick They now live in Henderson.

Chef Wanphen McDonald graduated from the prestigeous Thai Royal Culinary Academy and has traveled the world. Super moist banana cake recipe You can sample her traditional Thai fare at Pangea Kitchen on Evansville’s east side. Banana loaf recipe uk (Photo: Aimee Blume/Special to the Courier & Press)

As the kids entered school, McDonald began volunteering, teaching cooking classes at Thyme in the Kitchen in Evansville, speaking on Thai food and culture, working as a private chef and thinking about going back to work in a restaurant. Best moist banana cake recipe For her passionate community work, she was even awarded the title of Kentucky Colonel.

At about this time, Randy Hobson was putting together an idea for a restaurant combining the most excellent parts of authentic Italian and Thai cuisine that he planned to call Pangea.

“I was playing online thinking about applying for a job, and I saw Pangea. Moist banana cake recipe And my husband said to go ahead and apply. Moist banana cake recipe jamie oliver I thought ‘I’m not going to get this job,’ but I went ahead and sent my resume and told Randy about my passion and experience. Banana loaf recipe nz So he called me in to interview.”

This Pangea pizza is a fusion of their wood-fired Neapolitan crust with a topping of Thai Basil Chicken with fresh cucumber slices. Best banana cake recipe moist Two good things rolled into one amazing dish. Banana loaf recipe moist (Photo: Aimee Blume/Special to the Courier & Press)

The match was perfect, and McDonald helped develop Pangea into a restaurant that in less than a year has been voted one of Indiana’s best 15 restaurants by Best of Indiana, one of only three outside the Indianapolis area to make that list.

“Randy lets me have freedom,” said McDonald. Best banana chocolate chip bread recipe “We do new things, unique things, so people can experience something, and I do the traditional Thai dishes exactly the way it is done in Thailand without modifying anything for American tastes, so people can see and understand. Banana chocolate chip bread recipe Most Thai cookbooks still use recipes from the 19th Century.”

McDonald doesn’t cook only Thai food at Pangea. Banana nut bread with applesauce She is in charge of the entire a-la-minute cooking area which includes the rotisserie and a menu of entrees, sandwiches and salads influenced by her travels around Asia, including her 3-year stay in South Korea.

Every day brings new specials to McDonald’s Pangea offerings, but she picked two Thai dishes, specifically, to keep on the regular menu: pad ke mao or drunken noodles, made with Pangea’s housemade pasta, and kao soi, also called Chiang Mai curry noodles.

“Drunken noodles use wild ginger, that’s why I picked that one,” she said, referring to the uncommon rhizome related to ginger but with a much earthier and more floral aroma. Best banana nut muffin recipe “It has so much nutrition, it’s so unique, and makes people learn a new thing. Banana cake recipe without butter The kao soi has so many layers of flavor, and it’s so creamy. Healthy banana bread with yogurt It uses black cardamon, which is kind of smoky and menthol; it cools the inside of your body down. Banana bread with oat flour I cook with nutrition and education in mind.”

Thai food is a world unto itself and in many ways very different from the way Europeans cook. Banana bread cupcake recipe Fine modern western chefs, for example, stress keeping flavors simple and letting the ingredients shine. Banana bread recipe low sugar Thai chefs also insist on high-quality ingredients but embrace complexity.

“In European cuisine, they say ‘keep it simple,’” said McDonald. Banana bread recipe no sugar “In Thai cuisine, we say ‘keep it balanced.’ There are so many layers and specific techniques. Banana nut muffin recipe When you are making a Curry, you start with dry ingredients first, then the wet ones, step by step to layer the flavors. Banana walnut muffin recipe In school, when you make the curry, there are five things you expect when you taste it–spicy, salty, sweet, creamy, sour. Banana bread recipe oil You have to experience those tastes in the right order. Healthy banana loaf recipe So if the teacher tastes a curry and experiences sweet before spicy, the curry fails.”

Thai cooks have recipes, but usually skills are passed on orally through families, mother to daughter and granddaughter. Banana cake no eggs Steps are explained not in terms of minutes or heat level but by what the food should look, smell or sound like.

“It’s very instinctive,” said McDonald. Banana recipes without eggs “Thai chefs are usually women because we believe that women have more patience when they cook, more finesse. Banana muffin recipe without eggs The head chef at the Grand Royal Palace was a woman in her 80’s who had been cooking for the royal family since she was very young.”

Painstaking attention to detail and finesse means technique is king in Thai cooking. Banana nut bread with pecans For example, when seasoning the famous coconut chicken soup tom kha gai, McDonald always dissolves raw palm sugar into salty fish sauce before adding to the soup, rather than adding the ingredients separately. Banana bread nutrition Meat and vegetables are cut in certain shapes and sizes to take certain sauces. Banana bread cinnamon rolls For example, the green beans in Thai Chicken Basil, a dish often on the Pangea menu, are cut thinly on the diagonal so the open surface area both attracts more sauce and releases more green bean flavor onto your tongue than would be the case if the beans were simply cut straight across into rounds.

Also, there is very little fancy equipment in at Thai kitchen. Banana bread recipe whole wheat The main tools are the stove, wok, mortar and pestle, pot, spatula and chef’s knife. Moist banana bread sour cream It is the cooks expertise and instinct that make the food special.

“I love cooking so much,” said McDonald. Banana peanut butter muffins “It’s my passion. Banana bread recipe for bread machine I was always so proud of Thai culture and the way we cook, I want to share it, and I want to lead Pangea to be recognized in many states, it’s aiming high but that’s my goal.” If you go

Hours: 11 a.m. Banana peanut butter chocolate chip cookies to 9 p.m. Banana peanut butter chocolate Tuesday-Thursday, 11 a.m. Banana peanut butter chocolate smoothie to 10 p.m., Friday-Saturday

Chef McDonald shared three of her favorite traditional Thai recipes that are doable in the average American kitchen below. Banana peanut butter chocolate chip muffins Any ingredients not found at the average supermarket can be found at one of our local international markets. Banana cake with peanut butter frosting Spicy Thai Grilled Waterfall Beef Salad

1. Banana bread sugar free Preheat grill to medium high. Banana bread gluten free Rub the beef with salt and pepper, then grill 7-8 minutes per side. Banana peanut butter ice cream Put the beef on a plate and set aside. Banana muffins with cream cheese frosting Dry roast rice for 2 minutes in a pan over medium heat, then grind to fine powder in food processor.

2. Best banana muffin recipe ever Slice the flank steak into thin strips (so the beef will absorb the seasoning) and place in a large bowl. Easy banana muffin recipe Mix shallots, green onions, chili flakes, fish sauce, sugar, and toasted rice together with the lime juice and cilantro. Banana muffin recipe healthy Mix together until beef slices are evenly coated.

3. Banana muffin recipe best Serve atop romaine lettuce leaves. Banana muffin recipe easy Green Curry with Chicken

1. Banana cake recipe with sour cream Combine ? cup of coconut milk and green curry paste together in pot over medium heat. Best vegan banana bread recipe Stir continuously until greenish oil separates and is visible. Banana nut bread with cream cheese Add chicken and stir until chicken is coated well.

2. Moist banana cake recipe with sour cream When chicken is fully cooked, add fish sauce, palm sugar, kaffir lime leaves, basil, and the rest of the coconut milk. Banana bread recipe self raising flour Serve with roti (flat bread). Rachael ray chocolate chip banana bread Coconut Milk Sticky Rice with Mango

1. Easy vegan banana bread Soak the sticky rice for 45 minutes in hot water. Healthy blueberry banana bread Drain. Banana bread with cream cheese recipe Steam rice for 20-30 minutes.

2. Banana bread with cream cheese Mix coconut milk, sugar and salt together. Healthy banana blueberry bread Stir until ingredients combine and look clear.

3. Banana blueberry bread healthy Put hot sticky rice into coconut milk mixture and stir until evenly mixed. Paleo blueberry banana bread Cover with aluminum foil for at least 15 minutes.

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